When dealing with interior design for a home, you'll hear a lot of words being thrown around. Before you tackle a project, it's a good idea to familiarize yourself with some of the most important ones.
Visual movement is the idea that your eye tracks from one thing to another in a natural progression. If you've ever seen a cluttered room with random items scattered about, you know what the opposite of good movement is. Your eye can't find a starting point, and your attention isn't pulled in a fluid manner.
If the furniture in a living room is set up in a U shape with the mouth opening toward the entryway, for example, the movement will follow the arc. Adding a circular coffee table in the middle of the room will further drive that sense of movement. Similarly, lining three walls with furnishings and adding a square coffee table will create a linear movement that takes your eye directly to the items on the wall opposite of the entryway.
When someone enters a room, their eye should be driven to a specific spot. Generally, designers use dramatic items as focal points. For example, a fireplace is a very natural focal point. In a room that doesn't have an obvious go-to focal point, something like a large mirror, an alcove, or a strong piece of artwork can be the focal point.
The movement of the room should be used to accentuate the focal point. In the previous example of a U-shaped space, placing a mirror at the middle of the curve of the U will make excellent use of a natural focal point in the design.
It's easy to think of contrast as just being black on white. Folks in the interior design world, though, appreciate that there are many kinds of contrasts. For example, a hypermodernist kitchen can look very plain, but it also can be contrasted with natural textures. This gives the space a sense of excitement that would otherwise be lost.
Be aware that too many shifts in contrast can get noisy. It's usually best to use only two or three contrasts in a given space. A brick wall next to a brushed metal countertop, for example, is a single contrast. If you were to add a backsplash and bright colors in the same zone, it would go from contrasting to just plain hectic.
For more information, contact an interior design company like Design Wonders by Maryann.